Monday, April 9, 2018

Women Prompted Early Surveillance Photography

Click to enlarge.
Modern day surveillance photography started in Britain in 1913 with an unassuming prison van parked in the exercise yard of Holloway Prison.

We only know the occupant of the van as Mr. Barrett, a professional photographer who had been employed by Scotland Yard to snap paparazzi-style shots of the women in the yard.

His long-lens photography equipment — the purchase of which was authorized by the then Home Secretary — was rudimentary, but effective.

And who were these women Barrett was photographing? 

Members of the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU), also, and perhaps better, known as the suffragettes. Suffrage campaigns were ongoing in both Europe and the United States in the early part of the 20th century, with Finland being the first country to grant women the right to vote and stand for office in 1906. more